Wide Open-{DIY Photo booth in an Instant}-NJ/NY Photographer

So this past weekend I had a bridal shower for my dear friend who will be getting married in June! I am the maid of honor so with the help of the mom’s and the bridesmaids we put together a fun little shower to help celebrate this fun occasion. One of the ideas that I had for the shower was to setup some kind of photo booth area where the guest would be able to snap fun photos and then place them in a scrapbook with a message. During my planning of the shower if there was one thing I had to make happen it was this 😉 . So the first thing I did was google (because I looove google) how to make a DIY photo booth and one of the links i got was this one “It’s a Snap: DIY Photo booth” and I loved their whole setup and fun prop ideas and knew I could definitely do this! I think this photo booth idea is fun and great for showers and weddings and it makes a great memory for the bride and groom. Professional photo booths can run you $800-1200 if not more to rent, but if your budget doesn’t allow for it then consider doing a DIY one.

What you need:

1. Fun and funky fabric- In my case I looked on Etsy.com for some vintage type fabric and found a few good samples but being the procrastinator that I have become ( I blame John) I waited to long to order so I had to think of an alternative. If you do want to buy fabric you probably need about 3-5 yards depending on how much space you have! The route that I took was to find a funky fabric shower curtain! Yes I said shower curtain people, that’s how I roll! In the end this worked out best because it already had openings to clip rings to hang it or even thread with twine and it was enough fabric for my setup. Below is the one I actually used, purchased at Bed & Bath  :)

2. Props- It’s fun to have props for your guest to use while taking the photo, because with out them it’s just going to be someone standing in front of a wall and then it looks like a mug shot LOL! One of the bridesmaids the crafty one 😉 made us some really cute props with mustaches and lips! You can also find these on Etsy, but with our budget it was best to make them ourselves and they were really easy to make. Another fun idea is to have a mini chalkboard (again you can find on Etsy) and have your guest write messages on there for the couple or bride.

Photo courtesy of Maro Designs

3. Instant pictures- You need either an instant camera or a camera printer setup. Now I was looking for ways to do this that would be easy and affordable, my first thought was to use my own DSLR and find a printer to print 4×6 images out, but I couldn’t find a printer and then it would mean I would have to man the booth the entire time with my camera and that wasn’t going to happen. So then I considered buying an old Polaroid camera that I found online for like 10 bucks LOL but the film was not cheap so that went out the window. Lastly I thought to myself, well I have been eyeing that new Fuji Instax camera, what better excuse to buy it then for this ( imagine Johns face when I told him this) I told him it’s the best solution a WIN WIN! Of course he rolled his eyes at me but that was it I convinced myself to get it. Although a little bit pricey for the 25 model the 7s more affordable, but I found the 25 model on eBay for a great price 😉 . I highly recommend this camera it worked out great and everyone had a blast using it!

4. Display the photos- Lastly you need to figure out how you want to display the images. We chose to go with a scrapbook and fun colored pens for guest to leave a message. Another idea that I loved was using a clothes line and hanging every one’s photos with a clothes pin I think this is a cute idea for a outdoor wedding or shower!

There you have it a DIY photo booth WELL under $1k LOL:)and personalized to match your style and event! Just remember you need to have someone man that camera but I guarantee you that person will have a lot of fun with the Instax! Happy shooting:)

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April 19, 2011 - 11:11 am

Nicole Chubb - I LOVE these ideas! Esp the shower curtain. I’m such a ditz – I use a plain white shower curtain for my backgrounds sometimes, I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me to use one with a pattern for a photobooth. lol. Sounds like your party was a hit!

ps: I’m DYING for a FujiInstamax! ::jealous:: 😉

April 19, 2011 - 2:47 pm

Meridith - Great idea on a budget- will keep it in mind for future parties:)

April 20, 2011 - 6:58 pm

Chantel - What a cute idea! :) I want the Fuji Instax so bad!

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